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Wanted & Fascism



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From a reader:

Mr. Goldberg:   I saw on your blog a post from someone claiming that Wall-E has fascist elements. Since I haven’t seen that movie yet, I can’t comment on it.   However, the other release this weekend–Wanted–is a different story. I saw it last night.   The movie is blatant fascist agitprop.    All the fascist tropes are there. The rejection of reason in favor of irrationalism and obscurantism (in the form of an ancient and primordial gnosis). The glorification of the ubermensch who transcends ordinary human morality (and ordinary humans). The obsession with authentic experience and concomitant disdain for lives not lived “to the fullest”. The embrace of violence, blood and rage as a means to self-actualization. The primacy of individual will. The imperative of a select few to direct the affairs of their fellow man.     At the end, Morgan Freeman even gives a long speech calling for his crew of superhuman assassins (the “wolves”) to claim their inalienable right to rule over the rest of us (the “sheep”). With a few tweaks, Hitler could have given the same speech and never batted an eye.     I did a quick Google search for fascism and Wanted together and found only one review making this point (and then only briefly and in passing).   I can’t be the only person who noticed this. I could have been watching Triumph of the Will.    By the way, I finished reading your book about two weeks ago. I found it fascinating and well-researched. It certainly heightened my sensitivity to fascist elements in film-making.


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